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Jolly Green Giants

The Honu is the Hawaiian Green Turtle, a gentle giant of the islands. You'll find then (now that they're protected) in rock pools and on beaches all round the Big Island, feeding on the green algae that coats the lava rocks. The old royal fish ponds at Keauhou are home to a small group of these beasts, and you can watch them gently scull through the cool water. At the hottest part of the day you can watch them haul themselves out of the water to rest and bask on the rocks.

One morning I scrambled over the rocks around the pool to get as close as possible to where they were feeding. You could see them sculling, their huge fins sliding out of the water.

Two turtles had a bit of a disagreement over who had right of way. Needless to say the biggest beast won.

Honu to Honu

One sculled around the pool, looking for the an unoccupied patch of algae.

Honu grazing

Another came very close, and I was able to photograph its delicately patterned shell,

Honu grazing

Beautiful beasts.

Keauhou, Hawaii
June 2009